A New Mexico university has said no thank you to a football player who was just accused of rape.
Eastern New Mexico University pulled the recruit’s scholarship offer this week after discovering the allegations.
Eighteen-year-old Andrew Gaines’ chance to play football at the next level may be over, at least at ENMU.
“We don’t want to have a knee-jerk reaction, but this is some pretty serious allegations,” said Dr. Greg Waggoner the athletic director at ENMU.
According to a court documents News 13 obtained, Gaines is accused of raping an incapacitated woman and fondling another — both either too drunk or high to consent to sex — in his hometown of Fairbanks, Alaska in April.
The standout running back and linebacker signed to play with ENMU back in February, but when the school found out about the accusations, they rescinded the soon-to-be freshman’s scholarship.
President Dr. Jeff Elwell said he regularly receives notifications that mention the university online from Google on his phone.
He said the allegations came to light when a newspaper in Alaska reported about the crime and he contacted the athletic department immediately. They hadn’t heard about it yet.
People we spoke with were torn with the school’s decision.
“At this time, probably it was the right move. I hope if he is found innocent that they will reconsider his scholarship,” said Susan Plumlee, a Portales resident.
“I think it all comes down to the case,” said William Gardener, another Portales resident. “You’re punishing someone before they’re even found guilty.”
“I think that it was a very level-headed decision,” said Kendall Romero, who went to ENMU. “It can always be reinstated if turns out that that isn’t what happened.”
Waggoner says they’re going to wait and let the court process play out.
“As with anything, due process has to take its course. People are innocent until proven guilty, but it’s some pretty serious legal charges,” said Waggoner.
Gaines was indicted on sexual assault charges last week.
He’s currently out of jail on bond.